Thursday, December 24, 2015

Workout I #3: Mostly good (Workout 60)

I actually had a lot of crowding issues at the gym during
this workout. 
I normally don't run into big crowding issues at the gym when I'm working out. There are lots of dumbbells (of most weights) and lots of stations at the cable machine, so I'm usually able to work something out, even if it involves swapping off between sets. I suppose, realistically, I didn't actually have problems with this workout, but it felt like I did especially for the last pair of alternating sets. 

It might be a harbinger of what January is going to bring -- my understanding from people who are more familiar with gyms and fitness centers is that January is really crowded with people who made New Year's Resolutions to get fit. That's going to be a drag. The crowding on the machines he uses has already got Patrick taking a cardio month (all elliptical, all the time). And we're looking at changing to a different gym in January -- there are two alternatives to Planet Fitness in town and we want to check both of them out. I like the Planet Fitness just fine, but I'm going to eventually get to a point where I need options it doesn't provide (heavier weights, step boxes, medicine balls, Valslides). We'll check out our options and see what we want to do.

I did Workout I #3 on Monday, December 21. I think we were running late, because there has to be some reason why I didn't do any Intervals of Insanity. I do remember for sure that Patrick finished about the same time I did, which was unusual and very cool. 

Monday's workout was: 
  • Plank with Reduced Base of Support - 3 x 50, 50, 44 seconds - I wrote this down as 3 x 45 seconds. The first set I was holding an arm up. The second and third sets I was holding a leg up. I hold one limb up for half the time, then the other one for the other half. That's actually why I did 50 seconds the first two sets -- I made a math error on how long to hold up the first side and I wanted to keep it balanced on both sides.  
  • Coordination Rows - 3 x 10 - I was just about nearly perfect this workout. I did one perfect set and two very nearly perfect sets. I'm *finally* really rocking these and may actually raise the weight from 20 lbs (which I went up to from 15lbs when I went from 12 to 10 reps) before I'm done with this phase. :D 
  • Dumbbell Jump Squats - 2 x 5 - These are a bit of a conundrum for me. I used a pair of 40 lbs dumbbells for these, which was fine for the first two times, but on Monday seemed kind of hard on my shoulders. Obviously jump squats are a leg (quad) exercise, but landing with the heavy weights at the ends of my arms was a jolt on my shoulder joints. Which I didn't like. I'm thinking maybe I should go for 35 lb weights and see if that's still a workout for my legs (I can always add reps if I need to). That might help. 
  • Alternating sets of:
    • Offset Lunges - 3 x 8 - When I did these with a 25lb dumbbell, these were too hard on my (non-working) quad. No that doesn't make much sense to me either. With a 20lb dumbbell it went much better and I didn't have any problems, but I was still working pretty hard. I need to ramp up the speed if I can't have the weight higher though. 
    • Assisted Chinups and Scapular Retraction - 3 x 8, 8, 7 (Chinups), 2 x 6 (Scapular Retraction) - These went much better. At the very least I didn't fall off the machine with a bang and a clatter.  I didn't quite make my reps, but I didn't miss by much -- just one in the last set. The way this machine works, the weight you set it to is how much of your own bodyweight you're *not* lifting. Which means that if your bodyweight fluctuates, you can lift more or less from one time to the next. (I only weigh myself once a week, so I am not up on day to day fluctuations.) It's possible that when I did these so poorly before, I was actually lifting more weight. I don't know. I also did better on the scapular retractions. I think I might be getting actually stronger. This is cool. 
  • Alternating sets of: 
    • Diagonal Raises - 3 x 8 - This is the pair of exercises that I ran into crowding issues with. There was someone on the Back Extension station when I got to that corner of the gym, so I did the Diagonal Raises first. The 10lb dumbbells I use for these were in use and the next lowest weight available was 17.5 lbs, which would have been WAY too heavy. So I used a 10lb weight plate. I figured 10lbs would be 10lbs, but it wasn't. The weight plate was kind of awkwardly balanced and shifted while I was lifting it and was just weird. I can't say I liked it very much, but I made it work. 
    • Back Extensions - 3 x 8 - By the time I finished my first set of Diagonal Raises, the station for these was free again. So I was able to do these. I moved up from 20lbs of weight plates held against my chest to 25lbs, which was good, Not too much, but not too little. 
  • Cardio -- As I mentioned above, I didn't do any Intervals of Insanity, because Patrick and I needed to stop on the way home and didn't want to get home (and to dinner) too late. Before starting with the strength training I did a 10 minute warmup on the treadmill. According to the machine I burned 150 calories in 10 minutes. Which I don't know that I believe. On the other hand, when I first started working on the treadmill (because the elliptical was beating up my quads), I could barely get to 80 calories in 10 minutes. So I'm doing a lot better than I was then. That's nice. 
We thought when we left the gym on Monday that we'd be going back on Thursday, Christmas Eve, in the morning when they were open, but decided to go on Wednesday instead. That will be my next post. :D

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